It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Murder (A Catering Hall Mystery)
3rd in Series
Publisher : Kensington Cozies (October 26, 2021)
Mass Market Paperback : 288 pages
ISBN-10 : 1496725360
ISBN-13 : 978-1496725363
Digital ASIN : B08VFBT9B2
I’m so excited to be a stop on the blog tour for author Maria DiRico and her new book It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Murder. It is the third book in her A Catering Hall Cozy Murder Mystery. I enjoy reading about Mia her family and friends and seeing what they are up to.
It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Murder (A Catering Hall Mystery)
by Maria DiRico
I loved the quirky characters involved with this one and Christmas stories always make me super happy. This one will definitely keep you guessing. . .
It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Murder by Maria DiRico is a fantastic holiday book that has you sitting on the edge of your seat.
~Baroness’ Book Trove
Astoria, Queens, is decorated within an inch of its life for the Christmas season, and Mia Carina is juggling her job at the Belle View catering hall with a case of murder . . .
Mia’s busy with a full schedule of events at the family business—among them an over-the-top Nativity-themed first birthday party and a Sweet Sixteen for a teen drama queen. But her personal life is even more challenging. Her estranged mother has returned—and her lifelong friend Jamie has discovered a shocking secret about his past. He’s so angry that he starts hanging out with Lorenzo, who claims to be his long-lost brother—even after it becomes clear that Lorenzo’s story is as fake as a plastic Christmas tree.
Then a body turns up among the elves in a Santa’s-workshop lawn display, and amateur sleuth Mia has a buffet of suspects to choose from. Amid the holiday celebrations, she intends to find out who’s the guilty party . . .
Italian recipes included!
After confirming a time for Operation Come Clean with Jamie and stuffing down a few more mini-cannoli to counteract the shot of Strega, Mia left Stony Harbor for Queens. Her anxiety level roof-bound, she slept badly that night. It didn’t help that Doorstop decided to snooze horizontally, reducing her bed space to around ten inches.
In the morning she opted for a cold shower to shock her system awake, despite the chilly early winter weather.
Mia shivered as she dressed. Since she planned to go to Piero’s straight from work, she opted for an all-black ensemble that could transition from day to night.
Mercifully, Mia’s roster of duties at Belle View kept her busy enough to shelve her worry about the hammer that was about to drop on her friend Jamie. But the day held a new surprise for her . . . one more ominous and fraught with complex emotions if that was possible. Mia was absorbed in tracking down a location that would rent her a donkey for the Bianchis’ manger first-birthday party when someone gave her door a gentle tap. “Enter,” she called, still focused on her computer screen.
“Ciao, bambina mia,” the visitor said, her voice soft and melodic.
Mia froze. No. It can’t be.
But it was. Mia slowly turned her attention away from the computer to the doorway. Standing there was her black sheep of a mother: the infamous Gia Carina Gabinetti
Mia is busy with her events planning, she has a sweet sixteen birthday and first birthday party to plan. And her good friend, Jamie, finds out that he has a brother that he never knew about. Something does not feel right about the brother and Mia plans on looking into it. But before she can, a dead body turns up and she must find out who the murderer is.
The characters are well rounded and well rounded. She has a special relationship with her dad and her brother, and her mother has come for a visit, which does not happen very often. She will have to figure out what her mother really wants.
The writing style flows shoothy and the book is an easy read. The author is very talented in her descriptive writing and I could picture the action taking place in my mind’s eye. The mystery was well plotted and not easily solved. I had quite a few suspects that I considered and I did not know who was responsible until it was revealed at the end.
I would highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a well crafted cozy mystery. I cannot wait to see what is in store for Mia and her family.
I voluntarily reviewed an ARC of this book provided by the publisher, Kensington Books, and NetGalley, which I greatly appreciate.
Maria DiRico is the pseudonym for Ellen Byron, author of the award winning, USA Today bestselling Cajun Country Mysteries. Born in Queens, New York, she is first-generation Italian-American on her mother’s side and the granddaughter of a low-level Jewish mobster on her father’s side. She grew up visiting the Astoria Manor and Grand Bay Marina catering halls, which were run by her Italian mother’s family in Queens and have become the inspiration for her Catering Hall Mystery Series. DiRico has been a writer-producer for hit television series like Wings and Just Shoot Me, and her first play, Graceland, appears in the Best Short Plays collection. She’s a freelance journalist, with over 200 articles published in national magazines, and previously worked as a cater-waiter for Martha Stewart, a credit she never tires of sharing. A native New Yorker who attended Tulane University, Ellen lives in Los Angeles with her husband, daughter, and two rescue dogs.
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